We Were Home

When I feel the need to go home and hanker for something good to read, I reach for Jan Karon, Fannie Flagg, and Janet Sheridan. The following Christmas story was written by Janet Sheridan. I hope you enjoy it. MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!

 

 

The Christmas homes of my childhood and adolescence were never the glossy homes of Christmas advertising, imposing structures lit by evenly-spaced lights filled with artistically decorated rooms inhabited by smiling families with color-coordinated clothing and perfect teeth.

Our pioneer-era house in Lake Shore, Utah, had elusive drafts, cranky doors, freezing bedrooms and a bathroom made hazardous by the ongoing battle between its faulty plumbing and our frustrated father. But it offered us the comforts of sitting sleepy-eyed in the morning by the living-room oil heater, crawling into the freshness of line-dried sheets on wash-day and listening to the ticking of the grandfather clock that echoed through the rooms like a heartbeat.

At Christmastime, glowing multi-colored bulbs lit the ornaments we carried home from school to hang on our tree and shimmered on the tinsel we dutifully hung strand by strand until, discouraged by the task’s endless nature, we decided tinsel looked best when tossed on by the handful. The smells of Mom’s baking and the sounds of the Christmas carols we pumped out on our player piano drifted through our days; and at night, the moon reflected softly off the smoothness of the surrounding snow-covered fields.

When we moved from Lake Shore, Mom and Dad said they’d bought a place in Spanish Fork, the nearby town where Lake Shore students attended junior high and high school. I didn’t want to move, but losing my status as a bus-riding country bumpkin eased my pain. So when we drove through Spanish Fork and two miles beyond, my teenaged eyes gazed with dismay at the sparsely-populated, rural area where our new house sat: no sidewalks, no corner grocery store, no ice cream truck tinkling by and no leisurely strolls to the movies, the Dairy queen or the junior high. I’d still live with three cows in a field behind the house waiting to be milked, a school bus with a pecking order to dictate seating and no way to get to town other than whining until someone agreed to give me a ride.

But the new home held the beauty of my mother’s creations: bright quilts, colorful braided rugs, the wood-glow of refinished furniture and the sparkle of fanciful tree ornaments cut from tin cans. It also had the convenience and warmth of a coal-fired furnace. True, the furnace sometimes burped smoke and gave up, but Dad always managed to coax it back to work by banging its pieces about and using his words from the steel mill.

After we moved in, Mom and Dad became hardworking partners, developing an area for a large garden plot and preparing the soil along the perimeter of the property for the fruit trees they planned to plant. After Mom went to bed on Christmas Eve, Dad sneaked her present into the living room. The next morning, cries of surprise and delight from Mom and pleased laughter from Dad awakened us. In his words, “Lesser women would have been dismayed, but Myrl thought the best present I ever gave her was that wheelbarrow.” The memory still makes me happy.

When I was in college, my parents followed a job to Lander, Wyoming, and the house in which they would live out their lives. It had an extensive living room with a wood-burning stove, warm lamps and sit-awhile chairs and couches that welcomed their adult children home. When we entered to the warmth of Dad’s fire, the smells of Mom’s cooking and the smiles on their faces, the love that flowed through our childhood Christmases enveloped us again.

We were home.

Sheridan’s book, “A Seasoned Life Lived in Small Towns,” is available in Craig at Downtown Books and Steamboat Springs at Off the Beaten Path Bookstore. She also blogs at www.auntbeulah.com on the 1st and 15th of every month.

 

 

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Published by

Lucie

After much encouragement and prodding by family, friends and professionals, I (a former Special ed. teacher and consultant from Northern Ca.) decided to take my FACEBOOK postings on my silly life with my life partner and 2 wacky cats and share them with a broader audience. I've brought laughter and joy to a number of people now for quite a few months and sincerely hope that I can bring a chuckle or two to all who read my bi- weekly entries on my blog. (Now let's hope that I can muster enough competence to figure out how to use this site in a reasonably competent fashion, so that I still have fun writing and others can actually "find me"!!!!) I wish all who enter "Lucie's World" much joy and laughter and ask that if I've touch your life in any way and made you giggle or smile, that you "pay it forward" for the week and share a moment or two of laughter with someone that you care about....

13 thoughts on “We Were Home”

  1. Hi Lucie,
    Thanks for sharing this story Lucie, It is a beautiful story, reminding us all of the places we have called home. Janet brings words to life, I always feel like I am right bang smack in the middle of wherever she takes me. It would be so special to write as beautifully as Janet does, it would be wonderful to meet her in person, have a cuppa and a chat…I can imagine Janet to be a very special lady and how lucky are we to experience all the amazing places she takes us, through her writing.

    This story took me to a very special and loving place I once called home. I only pray and hope that my children and grandchildren feel the same èmotions that Janet, you and I all felt when we were home..
    Great work Lucie, sharing this story with your readers
    It’s GOLD!!!!!
    Love and hugs always
    From
    Annie in Australia 🌞 🌴 🌊 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed it, Annie. Janet has a gift that just keeps on giving…..I’m so glad that she allowed me to share it and that you enjoyed it. And Annie, YOU, too, have a wonderful gift of expression. And it’s Annie perfect. Just write the way you speak…you’re a gifted story teller – a highly talented, gifted story teller. Just “keep swimming and WRITING”……and believe in yourself. Love you, Kiddo. Hope you’re feeling better….<3

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hey Lucie
        Absolutely loved We Were Home from Aunt Beulah. I like the way you and Aunt Beulah select certain days or dates to post your stories, I am feeling stronger every day now so perhaps I can expect the fog in my brain to settle now too. Not holding my breath on that, I am up and about mate, runnin’ on top of the ground so I’ll bust out a few stories over the coming weeks.
        Gotta thank you for all your support, care, love and prayers in 2016.
        Thanks heaps for your encouraging words here, ya just a bonza pal, well loved by many people Lucie.
        I send lots of love and hugs across the miles
        From
        Annie in Australia 🌞 🌴 🌊 💜 💜 💜

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you for your kind words, Buddy! You know I love you, Anne Girl. You “keep swimming” and I’ll surround you with prayers and love…..Hugs….Lucie ❤

        Like

  2. Thanks for publishing this, Lucie, and for all your kind comments about me and my stories. I think the partnership we have formed has been a blessing to both of us. Can’t wait to talk with you again, and I hope your Christmas was everything you wanted it to be, dear friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It certainly has…been a blessing. My family and friends enjoyed this piece as much as me. Christmas was lovely, thank you. Lasagna turned out pretty tasty (if I do say so myself!) and people had a good time. Hope yours was blessed, as well….talk at you soon….<3

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth. She has a home-grown talent for this kind of writing . And she’s as beautiful a writer as she is a human being. So glad you enjoyed her. I continue to wrap you in prayers and love….💖Merry Christmas!🎅⛄🎄

      Liked by 1 person

    1. She’s a talented writer and one awesome woman! I facetime with her once or twice a month and she’s a beautiful, beautiful person! You, like me, loved the wheelbarrow story…..Her stories are all good, but this Christmas one especially touched my heart. I’m glad you liked her. (((Hugs))) Lucie Thanks for reading……

      Liked by 1 person

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